The International Injury Minefield

International Break Week Review
With Expert Insights From

When the international break arrives, we invariably see a sudden glut of players confined to the treatment room. And, as one of the worlds’ most cosmopolitan leagues, injuries can be difficult to track, but, as always, we will endeavour to do our best throughout the build-up to game week thirteen to give an update, and insight, into the latest player withdrawals:

Tom Heaton (Aston Villa and England)

Injury: Calf

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Game week thirteen (Newcastle United)

???? Manager Dean Smith confirmed that the goalkeeper would miss Sundays’ midlands derby at Molineux due to a muscular problem: “Tom Heaton’s been struggling with a calf, so I knew he was going to pull out of the game.”

Ross Barkley (Chelsea and England)

Injury: Ankle

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Ongoing issue. No definitive timeline.

???? Barkley has not featured since suffering an ankle injury in week nine. Speaking ahead of the game with Crystal Palace, Frank Lampard revealed. “Ross has got an ongoing issue, so he’s not in the squad tomorrow.” And when asked about Barkley’s possible involvement for the Three Lions, he said. “It’s a conversation I’ll have with Gareth [Southgate] Steve [Holland], Ross and everyone to see how it pans out for him over the next ten days.”

Adama Traore (Wolverhampton Wanderers and Spain)

Injury: Undisclosed.

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Game week thirteen (AFC Bournemouth)

???? Traore completed 90 minutes against Aston Villa on Sunday but released a statement via his personal Twitter account within hours of the final whistle confirming his withdrawal from the national team. “It is a shame not to be in the call of the Spanish Football Federation. I want to thank the coach and the entire coaching staff for the trust. I will continue to work hard so that, God willing, I have the opportunity to be summoned again in future calls.”

Josip Drmić (Norwich City and Switzerland)

Injury: Hamstring

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Being assessed.

???? The Canaries attacker was introduced as a second-half substitute at Carrow Road on Friday but limped through the closing stages of the game as Daniel Farke had already made three substitutions. The Swiss FA confirmed a day later that Drmic would remain in England “for further medical clarifications” on a muscular injury.

Roberto Pereyra (Watford and Argentina)

Injury: Hamstring.

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Being assessed.

???? Pereyra pulled up on the half-hour mark at Norwich due to an apparent hamstring problem. The attacker had been called up for the upcoming friendly internationals against Brazil and Uruguay which are due to take place in Saudi Arabia and Israel.

Christian Pulisic (Chelsea and United States)

Injury: Hip

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Being assessed. Hopeful for week thirteen (Manchester City)

????️ USMNT Head Coach Gregg Berhalter confirmed on Monday that Christian Pulisic would not be joining the squad after he picked up a knock during the win over Crystal Palace. “The only frustration is he comes off with a bit of an injury,” Chelsea boss Frank Lampard said on Saturday. “He was going to be subbed before he scored his goal, he’s got a bit of a hip issue, but I’m hoping it’s not too bad because the way he’s in full flow at the moment is great to see.”

Lloyd Kelly (AFC Bournemouth and England Under-21s)

Injury: Thigh

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Being assessed. No timeline.

????️ Kelly has been on the fringes of the first-team squad since his arrival from Bristol City in the summer. The Cherries boss confirmed on Saturday that the 21-year-old has a “thigh problem” which was likely to rule him out of the upcoming internationals against Albania and the Netherlands.

Aaron Connolly (Brighton and Republic of Ireland)

Injury: Groin

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Hoping to be ready for week thirteen (Leicester City)

????️ The Brighton attacker was forced off during Sundays’ defeat at Old Trafford and was sent for further tests on Monday. Ireland manager Mick McCarthy confirmed his withdrawal later that day. “Our team doctor Alan Byrne has spoken to the Brighton medical team and had a look at the scans. The scans have confirmed the groin injury, and Aaron won’t be ready for New Zealand and Denmark.”

Scott McTominay (Manchester United and Scotland)

Injury: Ankle

Potential return-to-play (RTP): Assessments continue. Expected to be several weeks.

????️ Scott McTominay could be sidelined until mid-December following an initial scan which suggests the United midfielder suffered ligament damage against Brighton. “He went over on his ankle. It’s a painful one,” revealed Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. “I’ve had one, and I was out for eight weeks. But then again sometimes you’re back in two weeks, so I don’t know. It looked painful, and he’s not one for rolling around.”

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